Buying Guides

Best Thanksgiving Meal Delivery Services

Williams Sonoma is our top pick

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Happy boy talking to his parents during Thanksgiving dinner at dining table


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If you’re looking for a way to take the stress out of the holidays, Thanksgiving meal delivery services are a good option. These pre-cooked and/or prepared meals come with everything you’ll need for the big day, from the turkey (or another main dish, like a ham or a vegetarian entree) to the pie, and they will deliver your meal directly to your door. Some even allow you to order wine or other beverages.

The best services offer a variety of options for your Thanksgiving meal, including full meals and à la carte options. Here are the best options for an effortless holiday meal.

Best Thanksgiving Meal Delivery Services of 2021

Best Overall: Williams Sonoma

Williams Sonoma

Williams Sonoma

Why We Chose It: Williams Sonoma offers a number of different Thanksgiving dinners, including full meals and dozens of different a la carte sides and desserts.

Pros
Full meals and à la carte options
Multiple styles of turkeys
Dozens of appetizers, sides, and desserts
Range of prices

Cons
Some options are expensive

For the best range of options and the most flexibility (plus food that reviewers love), head to the Williams Sonoma website to order your Thanksgiving meal. The company has a number of different meals available and lots of different turkey options. You can opt for a full meal for eight that includes a pre-brined turkey ready for the oven, or a Southern-style feast with a turkey that is already deep-fried and just needs to be reheated. If you’d rather mix and match the elements of your meal, you can choose from a variety of smoked, brined, or fried turkeys (including cooked and uncooked options) and build the rest of your menu from the dozens of classic sides (such as green bean casserole, mac and cheese, rolls, and mashed potatoes) and beautiful pies.

If you’re looking for something other than turkey, you could opt to order a stuffed turducken, a ham, a beef tenderloin, or even some tamales. Full meals for eight people range from roughly $300 to $600, depending on whether you want a basic meal or one that adds lots of additional sides and appetizers.

Many of Williams Sonoma’s Thanksgiving-style meals are actually available year-round, but there are some seasonal options that become available in the fall. Either way, you’ll want to order your meal a couple weeks or more in advance of the holiday. The prepared dishes are shipped frozen and need to be thawed for 24 to 72 hours and then baked. Sides generally take 30 to 60 minutes in the oven, while smoked and fried turkeys will take between 1 and 2.5 hours to reheat; an uncooked turkey will take around 3.5 to 4 hours to fully roast, depending on its size.

Best Ready-to-Eat Option: Burgers’ Smokehouse

Burgers' Smokehouse

Burgers' Smokehouse

Why We Chose It: This venerable meat specialist has a number of ready-to-eat Thanksgiving meal options and allows you to order full meals or mix and match.

Pros
Lots of options for turkey or other meats
Affordable
Good selection of classic sides and desserts
Straightforward instructions
Available in all 50 states

Cons
Can’t choose delivery date
Only a few appetizer options

Based in Missouri, Burgers' Smokehouse is perhaps most famous for its hams, which it has been selling since 1952. However, it also offers two different kinds of smoked whole turkeys (hickory-smoked or pepper-coated), two roasted turkeys (honey or herb), and lots of smaller cuts like cooked turkey breasts and legs. Its prepared meals include a smoked turkey, ham, prime rib, or barbecued ribs; two sides; and a pie. You can also build your own meal by picking exactly the style of turkey or other protein you want and then choosing from seven sides and 15 desserts.

Everything except for a few foods that can’t be pre-cooked—such as steaks, bacon, and beef roasts—will arrive ready to re-heat. The company also sells a few items that can be served as appetizers, like a sausage and cheese box or bacon-wrapped jalapeños. Full meals, which feed six to eight people, cost approximately $160–$165, depending on the type of meat.

All of Burgers' Smokehouse’s meals are available at any time of year. For Thanksgiving, make sure to order a couple of weeks ahead; Burgers' ships holiday meals five to 10 days before the actual holiday so that customers have time to thaw everything. (The website notes that some products may ship separately.) Once your meal arrives, you’ll need to thaw your dishes completely (some meats can take up to three days) and then heat them in the oven for around 1.5 hours.

Best Meal Kit Option: Blue Apron

Blue Apron

Blue Apron

Why We Chose It: Blue Apron’s chef-designed Thanksgiving meal kits offer an excellent selection of classic and inventive dishes, and you can choose from a full-meal option or pick from a variety of offerings.

Pros
Excellent customer reviews
Good variety of sides
Combination of classic and inventive dishes
Offers seasonal wine bundle 

Cons
Have to subscribe to the service to order

If you want to cook your own Thanksgiving dinner but don’t want the hassle of choosing the dishes, figuring out what recipes to use, and shopping for ingredients, try ordering a meal kit from Blue Apron. Its Thanksgiving meals are designed by chefs and come with everything you’ll need to make the meal—without waste or hassle. The company offers both a full meal option (with turkey, a number of sides, and a dessert) and the option to choose which dishes you want to make and build your own menu. All of the dishes are easy to prepare, and most offer interesting, delicious twists on classic Thanksgiving staples. What’s more, Blue Apron also offers a wine bundle as an add-on, so everything you need for dinner (other than your tableware!) will be delivered right to your door.

Blue Apron is a subscription service, so you’ll have to sign up for a recurring meal plan to order its Thanksgiving dinner, but there are no fees, other than the cost of the food, and you can cancel after just one order (including the one for Thanksgiving). The Thanksgiving kit is designed to feed eight people and costs around $17 per person. Once you sign up, you’ll be able to choose from a few delivery dates (based on your ZIP code). When your kit arrives, you’ll need to refrigerate the ingredients immediately.

Best for Dinner for One: DoorDash

DoorDash

DoorDash

Why We Chose It: Ordering a Thanksgiving meal from a local restaurant using DoorDash offers lots of flexibility and options.

Pros
Mix of traditional and non-traditional meals
Don’t have to order a meal meant for a large group
No need to order weeks in advance
Range of prices

Cons
Service can be slow on holidays
Restaurant choice can be limited on holidays
Higher delivery fees during busy times

If you’re planning a quiet Thanksgiving on your own or simply have different dietary restrictions than others at your table, you can use DoorDash to find a wide variety of meal options from local restaurants. In most cities you’ll find a number of different foods to choose from: If you want a classic meal of turkey and sides, you can have it delivered from Boston Market; or, if you’re in the mood for something a little more unusual, opt for some roast duck and stir-fried greens from a nearby Chinese spot. You may also be able to find holiday specials from local restaurants; in the past, for example, Balboa Café in San Francisco offered options like crab cakes, rum-brined turkey breast, and butternut squash soup for Thanksgiving delivery.

Because the DoorDash app relies on independent delivery drivers, and many people opt not to work on holidays, delivery times are often slow on Thanksgiving. (Prices may also be higher, as fees go up during busy times.) For an on-time meal, it’s best to order early. To plan ahead, look at the restaurants on DoorDash’s app or website and check those locations’ holiday hours and specials.

Best for Vegetarians: Trader Joe’s (via Postmates)

Trader Joe’s

Trader Joe’s

Why We Chose It: Trader Joe’s offers a wide variety of ready-to-eat vegetarian meal options, including lots of popular seasonal items as well as sides and sweets.

Pros
Popular vegetarian “meat” entrées
Wide variety of vegetarian foods
Inventive seasonal dishes
Affordable prices

Cons
No full meal options
Not available everywhere

For delicious, inventive, meat-free dishes to serve on Thanksgiving, look no further than your local Trader Joe’s store. The company offers a variety of delicious holiday meal options, including a very popular stuffed “turkey-less” roast with gravy. You can also get mushroom-based vegan gravy, ready-to-heat roast vegetables and stuffing, mashed sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, and, of course, the ingredients to make any other dishes you might want to add to your table (such as green beans with fried onions or cornbread). The chain also offers seasonal desserts like apple caramel slab pie and pumpkin-flavored sandwich cookies. And, because the foods are coming from a grocery store known for high quality and low prices, an entire meal for six people (roast, sweet potatoes, stuffing, cranberries, and dessert) costs less than $50.

You can order Trader Joe’s food through Postmates, a delivery service that offers food from local grocery stores and restaurants. Just order the dishes and ingredients you want through the Postmates website or app, and a shopper will pick them up for you and deliver them to your door. Because Trader Joe’s’ seasonal items can be very popular during the holidays, it’s best to order a few days before Thanksgiving.

Best for Customization: Goldbelly

Goldbelly

Goldbelly

Why We Chose It: With a wide variety of holiday meals and dishes from restaurants across the country, Goldbelly offers lots of options for traditional and non-traditional holiday meals.

Pros
Wide variety of options
Can order non-traditional holiday dishes 
Hundreds of dessert options
High-quality meals

Cons
Highest quality meals can be expensive
Items may come in separate deliveries

Goldbelly’s vast range of meals from high-quality restaurants offers a unique opportunity to build a Thanksgiving menu with a mix of classic, creative, and unique dishes. You can order your meal one dish at a time by choosing from a range of cooked and uncooked turkeys (or turduckens, “turporkens,” hams, or other proteins) and selecting individual sides and desserts from other restaurants across the country. Or, you could start with an entire meal, like a Thanksgiving Dinner for Four from Commander’s Palace in New Orleans, and then add additional dishes and desserts from other chefs and restaurants.

While you’ll be able to place orders from a variety of restaurants and bakeries all at once on Goldbelly’s website (with one checkout process and one big payment), establishments ship their items separately, so you may receive the elements of your meal on different days. Similarly, items from different locations may have different storage and cooking instructions (you can generally find these in the items’ descriptions on the website before ordering). Prices also vary significantly from restaurant to restaurant; the Turkey Dinner for 4 from The Original Turkey in Philadelphia, for instance, costs $109, while a Cajun Spicy Deep-Fried Turkey from Uncle Ray’s Fried Turkeys in Dallas costs $99 without any sides.

Best for Large Gatherings: Instacart

Instacart

Instacart

Why We Chose It: Ordering a holiday meal from local grocery chains is a low-cost option for feeding a crowd, and Instacart’s fast service allows you to add additional foods as needed.

Pros
Affordable options
Quick delivery
Easy to scale up orders to feed a crowd

Cons
Options vary depending on location
Service can be slow around holidays

If you’re feeding a crowd for the holiday, the key is to find an affordable meal with lots of options to suit every dietary preference. Grocery chains like Wegmans and Stop & Shop offer pre-cooked Thanksgiving meals with all the classics—turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, and vegetables—for a little as $50 for 10 servings. Many also offer all of the same elements à la carte, as well as a variety of other cooked foods, so you can mix and match your sides and make sure that you have enough variety on your table to please everyone. And because the meal is coming from a grocery store, you can also choose additional options from the frozen meal and bakery cases to round out the meal—and get all of the fixings for post-holiday turkey sandwiches.

The grocery delivery service Instacart allows you to order from a variety of different grocers in your area for same-day or pre-scheduled delivery. You’ll have to browse the different markets in your area separately (the company’s website separates the items available at each market, and you can only order from one location at a time), but delivery fees are low enough that you can always opt to put in two orders if you want to get your turkey and dessert from two separate stores.

Final Verdict

Putting together a successful Thanksgiving feast involves choosing dishes that make the meal feel special—including classics that everyone expects to see on the table—and making sure guests have foods that fit their dietary preferences. When picking a Thanksgiving delivery service, first consider who you’re feeding, your budget, and how much work you want to do to prepare the meal itself. All of the recommendations above will offer a spectacular meal, but we recommend starting your search with Williams Sonoma because of the variety and flexibility it provides.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do Thanksgiving Meal Delivery Services Work?

Thanksgiving meal delivery services take a number of forms: You can order a full meal or individual dishes from a specialty food company, have holiday dishes shipped from a restaurant, have pre-portioned ingredients delivered so that you can make the foods yourself, or use a delivery service to get food from local restaurants and markets. If you’re ordering food from a restaurant or food company outside of your local area, the foods will come frozen or chilled with cooking or reheating instructions. If you’re ordering local food from a third-party delivery service, the meal may arrive warm and ready to eat.

How Much Do Thanksgiving Meal Delivery Services Cost?

Ordering your Thanksgiving meal from a delivery service can be pricey—especially if you opt for dishes from well-known restaurants or include lots of sides, appetizers, and dessert—but you can also find affordable options. Expect to spend anywhere from $10 to $75 per person, depending on your budget and your food choices.

Are Thanksgiving Meal Delivery Services Worth It?

Having your Thanksgiving feast delivered to your door can save you hours (or even days) of work. In general, ordering pre-cooked or prepared food will cost more than buying it yourself and making it from scratch. That said, if you’re short on time, don’t enjoy big project meals, want something really unique to serve your guests, or just aren’t comfortable putting together such a big feast, a delivery service can save you a lot of time.

Methodology

To select the best Thanksgiving meal delivery services, we prioritized companies that offer some version of classic dishes along with lots of variations and options, so that customers can choose holiday meals that are interesting and special and also accommodate their guests’ dietary preferences. Lastly, we looked for services that produce great, delicious food for this holiday feast.

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